The Obama administration promised Thursday it is not monitoring the communications of German Chancellor Angela Merkel, nor will it do so in the future.
But the White House refuses to say whether the U.S. has engaged in such snooping in the past.
“We’re not going to comment on every specific alleged intelligence activity,” White House press secretary Jay Carney told reporters. “The president spoke with Chancellor Merkel, reassured her the United States is not and will not monitor the chancellor’s communications.”
Mr. Carney also added that the U.S. will continue “reviewing the way we gather intelligence.”
The snooping allegations have touched off a firestorm in Germany, and led Ms. Merkel to call Mr. Obama directly on Wednesday.
Similar accusations also have emerged in France, where leaders — including President Francois Hollande — have confronted the White House over suspicions the U.S. is monitoring calls and text messages of French citizens.